The Presidential Debates

What do they mean going into Election Day?


After all the controversy, argumentation, and contention that has been going on concerning the race for the presidency, most people are weary of the hackneyed news, gossip, and various biased announcements that have been put forth. Many just want honest, impartial evidence that legitimizes and clarifies the plethora of statements made by both main candidates, Hillary Clinton (Democratic Party) and Donald Trump (Republican Party).

With a somewhat overwhelming plethora of questionable sources, it may be difficult for the average American voter to decide what facts and statements are true, and which are false. One major way that can significantly influence his or her decision is by watching the presidential debates. By doing so, viewers get a glimpse of the true characters of the nominees, and how they react under pressure. For those who have not seen the presidential debates, they are an interesting and enlightening insight on how the candidates conduct themselves, and give further explanation of the candidates’ policies. Here are just some general overviews and results of the three presidential debates:

In the first debate, it was prominent that neither Trump nor Clinton were very strong debaters. However, each held their own and were able to have a relatively civil debate. Both were able to produce positive outcomes for their campaigns because of this debate. One of Clinton’s notable “high” points was referring to Trump’s treatment of women, which expectedly improved her voter support from likely female voters. Trump, for his part, managed to remain relatively calm during the debate, calling out Clinton for her illegal use of a private email server for classified emails. Because of this debate alone, almost 30% of women claimed that their opinion of Clinton changed for the better, while only 11% of women said that their opinion of Trump changed for the better.


At the second debate, however, both candidates seemed to have changed their attitudes. Trump seemed to be on full-frontal attack, avidly pursuing Clinton on almost every topic. He appeared to be more mentally-prepared for the questions asked, and what answers they should merit.  However, Clinton seemed more reserved and cautious (not to mention speechless at times). When she did attempt to speak, Clinton seemed fake, forced, and almost insincere. According to a CNN / ORC poll of debate watchers following the debate, Trump exceeded expectations, though Clinton won. The results showed that 57% said Clinton won, as opposed to 34% for Trump. However, this debate was a much-needed recovery for Trump, though he may not have won the majority.

At the third and final debate, Trump seemed a little lackluster, though he continued to make his trademark stinging remarks, mostly on the stamina of the Democratic nominee. Many were hoping Trump would take advantage of the slight favor he had from the previous debate. Whether or not he did remains up to the voters. Clinton, on the other hand, seemed inexplicably to gain more support from this debate by doing what she usually does: standing, smiling, and answering vague questions with even vaguer answers. However, by the end of these three debates, 47% of viewers said that Trump seemed more sincere, as compared with a close 46% who said Clinton seemed more trustworthy. 


All in all, it does not really matter what the polls say. What matters is each individual’s right to vote for the candidate that they believe will uphold the laws, strictures, and values that our country was founded upon. It is vital that each able citizen goes out and votes for the candidate of his choice, who represents his values and beliefs, and not vote for whatever seems more popular and manipulative. Whatever happens, however, it is imperative that we not let our political beliefs divide our great nation, and that we stand together, united as one common people.


Photo credits: All credit to the BBC and Fox News Channel